How To Repair The ERR_SSL_PROTOCOL_ERROR (8 Methods)


You go to your favourite website and obtain a warning about an invalid certificates or ERR_SSL_PROTOCOL_ERROR. Abruptly, you possibly can’t go to the positioning, and the data you need is not accessible.

This frequent error is expounded to points establishing an encrypted SSL/TLS reference to the web site’s server. With out that safe handshake, browsers block entry to guard your knowledge.

The excellent news is that, though perplexing, you possibly can typically resolve the ERR_SSL_PROTOCOL_ERROR with a couple of easy fixes. On this information, we’ll uncover what causes it and stroll by numerous options to have you ever looking securely once more.


To know ERR_SSL_PROTOCOL_ERROR, we first have to discover how web site connections occur beneath the hood…

Once you enter a URL into an online browser, a request fires off to attach with a server to retrieve the related useful resource. If it’s an e-commerce website, you need assurance that private particulars like cost knowledge stay secure and that no sneaky eyes snoop alongside the buying journey.

Trendy websites use encryption referred to as TLS (Transport Layer Safety), which is predicated on an older protocol referred to as SSL (Safe Sockets Layer). SSL/TLS offers an encrypted safe connection that secures knowledge in transit between your browser and the online server internet hosting the positioning.

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SSL stands for safe sockets layer. SSL is a protocol for sustaining a safe connection and defending delicate knowledge to maintain web customers secure throughout on-line transactions, login sequences, and extra. Transport layer safety (TLS) is the successor to SSL that’s in place at present and handles vulnerabilities much more successfully.

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It protects data like logins, looking exercise, communications, and transactions by scrambling it into coded gibberish solely reconstituted on the last vacation spot factors.

However an encrypted connection doesn’t simply occur robotically (that’s a bit programmer joke!). The browser and server bear a meticulous multi-step course of termed a “handshake” to securely set up and validate the encrypted pathway, securely linking them.

Right here’s a fast rundown of the steps that happen within the background throughout an SSL handshake:

the SSL handshake starts flows from hello to agreement to verification to key swap to secure connection log in to data transfer

  • Hiya: The shopper says “Hello” to the server and shares choices for connecting securely.
  • Settlement: The server responds with its id certificates and agrees on the most effective encryption methodology.
  • Verification: The shopper verifies the server’s id is genuine.
  • Key swap: The shopper and server alternate particular keys to encrypt knowledge.
  • Safe connection locked in: Either side affirm every thing is sweet to go and create a safe connection.
  • Knowledge switch: The browser and web site can now share non-public data encrypted by the safe tunnel.

The principle objective is to share an id safely, validate each events, and commerce secret keys to encrypt knowledge between the shopper browser and server web site.

If something disrupts the TLS handshake, it fails. Web sites don’t load correctly, and the browser warnings let you know there was a connection error.

That failed handshake sometimes triggers the notorious “ERR_SSL_PROTOCOL_ERROR” message. It signifies the browser and server couldn’t agree on encryption variations, keys, certificates, or different required elements to finish the safety tunnel setup.

Now that you simply perceive what’s speculated to occur, let’s discover what could cause issues to interrupt, leading to ERR_SSL_PROTOCOL_ERROR frustration.


SSL/TLS are encryption protocols that set up an encrypted hyperlink between a browser and a server. They defend delicate knowledge equivalent to passwords, emails, downloads, and extra throughout their switch from you to the web site.

To create this encrypted connection, the browser and server should handshake utilizing suitable SSL/TLS variations, supported ciphers, and legitimate certificates. If something interferes with that authentication course of, the handshake fails – triggering browser warnings about connection points or the dreaded ERR_SSL_PROTOCOL_ERROR.

reasons for SSL errors include outdated browser, server config errors, SSL config errors, invalid certiciate, date & time issues, browser cache issues, and software interruptions

Potential culprits behind a failed SSL/TLS handshake embrace:

  • An outdated browser is unable to help trendy protocols.
  • The server doesn’t help the required encryption ciphers.
  • There are errors within the SSL/TLS configuration on the server.
  • The web site has an expired or invalid SSL certificates.
  • Incorrect date and time settings are in your system.
  • Caching points are corrupting SSL knowledge.
  • Issues come up with antivirus software program, firewalls, proxy settings, and extra.

Pinpointing what disrupted the handshake is a superb begin to correcting ERR_SSL_PROTOCOL_ERROR throughout your browsers and units.


With so many potential sources of the difficulty, you’ll want to methodically verify frequent points till you uncover the SSL/TLS troublemaker. Let’s discover important strategies to squash ERR_SSL_PROTOCOL_ERROR in your browser:

1. Set The Appropriate Date & Time

The best first step is to confirm you’ve set your pc’s date and time appropriately. If inaccurate, this could hinder SSL certificates expiration checks and different processes that rely on coordinated common occasions.

To shortly repair this:

screenshot of the date & time setting menu on a mac showing the toggle option to auto set date and time

  • Go to Home windows Date & Time settings or Mac system preferences.
  • Allow the “Set date and time robotically” toggle if accessible.
  • Choose your time zone.
  • Make sure the date and time match the present settings on-line.

When you’ve confirmed every thing is right, reload the positioning to see if this resolved your ERR_SSL_PROTOCOL_ERROR message.

2. Clear Browser Cache & Cookies

Outdated SSL knowledge in your browser cache or cookies can disrupt that important SSL/TLS handshake. Typically, clearing this knowledge resolves frequent SSL errors just like the one we’re at the moment tackling.

To flush cache/cookies in common browsers:

screenshot of the "Clear browsing data" setting in chrome pointing out the time range with "all time" selected from the drop-down

  • Chrome: Click on the menu button > Clear looking knowledge
  • Firefox: Click on the menu button > Choices > Privateness & Safety > Clear Knowledge
  • Safari: Develop menu > Empty Caches
  • Edge: Click on menu > Settings > Clear Shopping Knowledge

Choose all time ranges and verify cached photos/information and cookies earlier than confirming the clearing. Afterward, reload pages initially affected by ERR_SSL_PROTOCOL_ERROR to check whether or not this solved the SSL difficulty.

3. Replace Your Net Browser

One other browser-based wrongdoer is working outdated software program that can’t join utilizing trendy TLS 1.2 or 1.3 protocols many websites now require. Every model bump brings improved encryption energy that web sites use to guard web customers’ knowledge in transit.

Nonetheless, outdated browsers nonetheless function on deprecated protocols like TLS 1.0 with out help for present ciphers in a position to handshake new server configurations. To repair this, merely replace the browser to the most recent model.

Right here’s how one can replace frequent browsers:

about Chrome settings box showing the relaunch button to the right of "nearly up to date! relaunch chrome to finish updating"

  • Chrome: Click on menu > Assist > About Google Chrome. Chrome auto-updates however checks and triggers guide updates if accessible.
  • Firefox: Click on menu > Assist > About Firefox. Initiates auto-check and guide updates.
  • Safari: Apple menu > Software program Replace. or the Updates tab within the App Retailer app to verify for Apple software program updates, together with Safari.
  • Edge: Click on menu > Assist and suggestions > About Microsoft Edge to auto-update Home windows. You may as well manually replace if desired.

Set up any pending browser updates. As soon as accomplished, give websites with prior ERR_SSL_PROTOCOL_ERROR one other whirl to see if the replace did the trick.

4. Alter Firewall And Antivirus Settings

Safety software program like your antivirus program, VPNs, and firewalls play an vital position in defending units and connections from on-line threats.

Nonetheless, they sometimes overreach — misinterpreting authentic connections to web sites as potential dangers.

This interception blocks what seems suspicious, making the web site connections fail and triggering the frequent ERR_SSL_PROTOCOL_ERROR. Fortunately, that is simple to repair by including web site exceptions to safety instruments:

allowed apps setting box showing "ncat" highlighted and checkmark toggles checked for private and public

  • Home windows Firewall: Allow apps community entry beneath Permit an App By means of Home windows Defender Firewall.
  • Avast: Open the utility > whitelist internet addresses inflicting points on the Exclusions record.
  • AVG: Add problematic web sites to exclusions beneath Choices > Superior Settings.

For a diagnostic step, strive quickly disabling your antivirus software program to see if it resolves the difficulty. Equally, turning off your firewall momentarily may also help decide whether it is accountable for your SSL connection errors – Simply ensure that to show it again on!

When you’re positive these instruments are inflicting the errors, merely add exceptions, and also you’re able to hold shifting.

5. Examine SSL Certificates Points

Shifting gears into points exterior direct management, server-side web site infrastructure additionally performs a key position in finishing the TLS handshake with browsers.

An SSL-protected web site securely validates id and allows encryption. You may verify in case your connection to an internet site is safe by clicking on the padlock icon on the left of the URL in your handle bar.

Nerd Observe: The padlock icon has now modified to a “configuration” icon for the Chrome browser.

Nonetheless, expired or improperly arrange certificates can block establishing safe browser connections, triggering the ERR_SSL_PROTOCOL_ERROR warning.

close up of a chrome address bar shwoing the site information button engaged and options for connection is secure and cookies and site data and well as site settings

Whereas principally web site proprietor terrain, you possibly can completely verify to make certain it’s a server-side difficulty:

screenshot of the SSL server test by Qualys

For those who discover SSL certificates issues, you possibly can contact the positioning homeowners by in search of e-mail addresses on their web sites. With correct data, homeowners can shortly examine and deploy an up to date certificates.

6. Reset Browser Settings

Regardless of making an attempt typical browser fixes, if ERR_SSL_PROTOCOL_ERROR nonetheless dashed website loading hopes, take into account browser settings resets:

reset settings dialogue box on Chrome

  • Chrome Desktop: Click on menu > Settings > Reset settings.
  • Firefox: Click on menu > Assist > Troubleshooting Data > Refresh / Reset Firefox

Resetting erases ALL browser knowledge and customized settings. So, use this as a last-resort troubleshooting step. If some customized settings within the browser have been inflicting the difficulty, resetting will take away no matter issue was standing between you and the web sites working appropriately once more.

A phrase of warning — Don’t reset browser settings on a whim, because the deletion is aggressive. Strive safer choices first earlier than going this route!

7. Disable Browser Extensions

Some third-party browser extensions intrude with web sites loading correctly or establishing safe SSL/TLS connections.

Strive disabling pointless extensions one after the other and reloading impacted websites to verify if an extension causes points:

close up of a chrome extensions icon to the right of the address bar

  • Chrome: Puzzle icon > Handle extensions > Toggle off.

screenshot of two extensions in extension management menu noting the toggle in the lower right-hand corner of each box

  • Firefox: Menu > Add-ons > Extensions > Disable individually
  • Safari: Safari menu > Preferences > Extensions > Uncheck containers

If disabling a specific extension permits websites to load appropriately, replace the extension if doable or verify settings intently associated to privateness, safety, or SSL dealing with.

Nonetheless, you might have to completely take away an extension if issues persist.

8. Use A VPN Service

Notably when different troubleshooting struck out, routing internet site visitors by an encrypted VPN tunnel generally resolves cussed ERR_SSL_PROTOCOL_ERROR messages.

A VPN extends an encrypted tunnel out of your system to the VPN server itself first earlier than then reaching out to exterior web sites.

VPNs at a glance showing the VPB as a comms point between the client and the server

This permits websites to finish the SSL/TLS handshake by the VPN tunnel reasonably than dealing straight with a browser that struggles to make native encrypted connections.

To arrange a VPN:

  • Decide an excellent VPN supplier and obtain the software program.
  • Set up on the system, create an account, and hook up with the native server.
  • Refresh problematic websites with an energetic VPN.

If pages load appropriately, one thing associated to your particular community is probably going blocking profitable SSL handshakes natively. Company firewalls and proxies probably intrude with work units, for instance. Different geographic restrictions can even bubble up relying on the place you bodily reside when trying to entry sure web sites.

Whereas VPNs present non permanent reduction, they do degrade looking efficiency. Plus, prices add up for paid companies in the long run. So, decide if any restrictive insurance policies or configurations distinctive to your scenario block SSL site visitors, which the VPN efficiently sidesteps. On the finish of the day, you wish to handle the foundation trigger first, even should you select to resort completely to utilizing a VPN.


What’s the answer for ERR_SSL_PROTOCOL_ERROR?

The answer is figuring out what blocked the SSL/TLS handshake after which making use of the fitting repair whether or not updating outdated browsers, clearing corrupt cache knowledge, checking server configurations, or rectifying certificates points. That you must go one step at a time; verifying frequent causes of the  ERR_SSL_PROTOCOL_ERROR and dealing on fixing them.

What’s ERR_SSL_PROTOCOL_ERROR on my web site?

It doubtless means the online server is misconfigured and fails to ascertain SSL connections with visiting browsers, stopping SSL handshakes from finishing correctly. Website homeowners ought to study supported TLS and cipher variations, validate the certificates deployed, and make sure no blocking firewall guidelines exist on the server.

How do I verify my SSL settings in Chrome?

Use chrome://settings/safety within the URL bar. It shows certificates authorities saved, HTTPS/SSL model help functionality, administration of certificates, and choices to clear SSL state like session knowledge and hostname resolutions. Evaluation settings towards supported configurations by the web site for troubleshooting odd SSL habits in Chrome.

Forestall Future ERR_SSL_PROTOCOL_ERROR Woes

TLS handshakes are important for establishing safe encrypted web site connections. However they’ll fail in some ways: outdated software program, misconfigurations, certificates points, and extra triggering cryptographic errors that block entry.

As a website proprietor, it may possibly really feel overwhelming to remain on high of encryption protocols aside out of your different priorities. However your guests want assurance their knowledge will get protected throughout web site transactions.

That’s the place selecting a managed internet hosting supplier like DreamHost shines. The safety consultants right here deal with the heavy lifting by way of safety administration:

  • Mechanically apply the most recent TLS patches
  • Monitor expiring SSL certificates 24/7
  • Guarantee suitable ciphers and protocols
  • Present free shared certificates
  • Improve plans embrace devoted IP addresses
  • Save hours not having to troubleshoot cryptographic points!

DreamHost offers sturdy safety whereas abstracting away the complexities web site homeowners historically shoulder alone. One much less headache whereas maintaining websites secure and performing quick.

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